Jump to content
Sign in to follow this  
Yarium

Mass Effect: Andromeda

Recommended Posts

Finally got Mass Effect Andromeda last night, but only had about 2 hours to play. So far very nice, though definitely an entirely different tone than the previous games. I have a feeling that this is going to be a much more personal story. Non-spoilers; you can choose between 1 of 2 siblings right at the start, and I chose Sara Ryder (the preset, because the commercials sold me on her). Making her a very impulse and kind woman who also knows her shit and can be professional when she's not dreamy-eyed.

For the first mission, just a hint, complete everything before going to investigate the flares. There was a "mysterious cave" that I thought was accidentally going to continue the story forward, so went the other way, and I feel like I missed something big. I'll probably restart the game cause I'm very curious.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Put an hour or two into it last night, so far so good, still kind of feels generic and not a Mass Effect game yet.

Now i'm curious what part you missed Davis, I did all optional missions in the first area.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I replayed the first mission. Turns out the creepy path I didn't go down was a waypoint between two other areas I had already been. The only thing I had forgotten to do was scan the plant. Shrug, oh well.

I'm enjoying the game so far. The new citadel is huge again, like in the first Mass Effect. In fact, all the open areas right now seem really large, so it's going to take me some time because, damnit, I'm a completionist.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I used the EA Access to try a 10 hour demo. I wasn't sold on the characters (they didn't feel that developed in the intro and the side quests felt flat) but I did enjoy the exploration option of it. I'm holding off until a sale rolls around. 

  • Upvote 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, FoolishWolf said:

I used the EA Access to try a 10 hour demo. I wasn't sold on the characters (they didn't feel that developed in the intro and the side quests felt flat) but I did enjoy the exploration option of it. I'm holding off until a sale rolls around. 

I'm with you, I finished the Trial but still wasnt sold on a full 80+ tax.

I'll def buy it when it hits 59.99 though.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I played quite a bit this weekend (when I should've been painting Gulliman!), and I finally got sold on it. Giant snake-robot-tripod thing bursts from the ground and starts attacking me and I had to kill it. Big thrill when I defeated it. Apparently I'm lucky though because most people on the PS4 can't play that scene due to a glitch that prevents part of the mission from spawning. Thankfully it's just a side-quest so doesn't interfere with anything. However, my version has had none of the glitches that others apparently have.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
15 hours ago, Yarium said:

I played quite a bit this weekend (when I should've been painting Gulliman!), and I finally got sold on it. Giant snake-robot-tripod thing bursts from the ground and starts attacking me and I had to kill it. Big thrill when I defeated it. Apparently I'm lucky though because most people on the PS4 can't play that scene due to a glitch that prevents part of the mission from spawning. Thankfully it's just a side-quest so doesn't interfere with anything. However, my version has had none of the glitches that others apparently have.

And bam, there's the reason I haven't bought into it yet! :P  I was gonna pick it up last weekend, but a friend of mine told me to wait until they fixed all the bugs...and hopefully when the price drops too lol

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
On 3/27/2017 at 9:20 AM, dreadpirate said:

Put an hour or two into it last night, so far so good, still kind of feels generic and not a Mass Effect game yet.

Now i'm curious what part you missed Davis, I did all optional missions in the first area.

I agree.  Although I've only seen gameplay footage and trailers for Andromeda, it doesn't have that same feel of the other ME games.  Plus, something seems...off...about the faces for humans and asari.

Is it just me?? :S

Edited by M.R.V

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Okay, so I got through the game and have had time to digest it. Here's my thoughts.

#1 - It's Definitely Mass Effect
This may sound odd, but part of the way into the game I started worrying that I was losing the "it" factor that made Mass Effect what it was. Mass Effect has always been about choices, people, and science fiction. Science Fiction isn't supposed to be about the technology, it's about how the technology puts us into situations where we have to reveal who we are. The science in this game really wasn't doing that for a large part of the game, but it did come through. At first I thought Mass Effect Andromeda would be freed up a bit. The first game had such history and structure that it would be hard to put people in situations where they're adventurous explorers of the unknown, so I figured this was a cool way to wagon-train to the stars. Instead, they were so isolated that many of the cool science fiction tropes couldn't be brought in without it destabilising the whole thing. You work with an AI during the game, but all the tension that the original Mass Effect created with AI/Organic conflict is pretty much gone (save for a few throw-away lines and one mission). For something considered so heinous in the original games, everyone here was way too cool with it. You also come across an AI in Andromeda, but it's so brief it's unbelievable. Still, it came through eventually. It was during the raid on the Kett facility that the game started turning around because it really hit a home run on a science fiction concept and how it relates to the humanity of the game. Took a while, but it happened.

#2 - Mass Effect Shouldn't Be Open-World
In Mass Effect Andromeda, you are given an open world to explore. Each world is pretty huge, beautifully detailed, and wonderfully varied. These definitely feel like real worlds that you're encountering; not just a small piece of some backdrop. However, aside from obviously eating up a huge amount of design time, I fail to see why the game was made this way. My least favourite part of the original game was roaming around in the Mako. Those worlds were cut-paste with almost nothing there, but it wasn't because of the lack of stuff in those worlds that they weren't interesting, it was the driving around that was awful. This game doubles-down on the Mako experience with the Nomad vehicle. It's wayyy better than the Mako for sure in terms of going from point A to point B, but the whole thing that sucked about the Mako was the point A to point B journey anyways! Mass Effect 2 and 3 solved this by simply bringing you to the thick of the action every time.

I think they chose this in order to make the game about exploration, I guess to compete with No Man's Sky or Skyrim or something, but that's completely NOT what I want from a Mass Effect game. The best parts of Mass Effect Andromeda came when you did the loyalty missions, because these just immediately deposited you where you needed to be with the characters that matter. Boom, you're on a rig with Drack. Boom, you're underground with Vetra. Boom, you're in a ruin with Peebee. Those parts worked because you were going through a mission, fighting enemies in interesting scenarios (not just "whoops, there are guys shooting at you now... and you passed them..."), and bantering with your squadmates.

#3 - Fascinating Story
One of the best things about this game is the story. It is pretty darn solid, and definitely captures your attention of trying to make a new start to life in Andromeda. You are going through the pains of setting everything up after everything has gone to hell in a surprisingly hostile galaxy. Once you hit that mid-point of the story, you also get a new understanding of your enemies and why your actions matter not just to you or the Initiative, but to this region of space, and that gives your character some real agency. Your character is also getting to learn the ropes as well, and he/she grows as the story goes on, starting very unsure of themselves (at least in my first runthrough as a heartfelt/casual person) that not everyone instantly respects the same way Shepard was, but then grows into someone that people are looking up to and listen to. You prove your worth in the story. Your character's growth is also mirrored in the growth of the Initiative and your place in Andromeda - shaky at first, but building and growing in strength and respect.

#4 - Great Decisions
A classic staple of Mass Effect games are the decisions you get to make, and they are definitely here in abundance! Bioware is definitely getting a hang of the whole "morality compass", as it moves away from Paragon/Renegade to the same kind of system as in Dragon Age Inquisition; your character responds with either Heartfelt, Logical, Casual, or Professional dialogue options, and the game tracks which kind of choices you most commonly make. Most of the time it's all 4, but sometimes it's just 2. Oddly enough, the game also tracks binary decisions in the same manner, though it doesn't reveal which type of answer is which in some of these situations (it'll have the diverging arrow symbol, even though it'll still score against your personality traits). When your character says something completely in line with your dialogue choices to date without even asking you, it feels awesome, because it feels like these characters are actually meshing and interacting, which is wonderful.

As is classic in Mass Effect, the decisions you are making feel important, but the setting they put you in here (wagon-train to the stars) feels like it adds extra weight. You're making decisions that could affect the state of everything so early on. We all know it won't, but it feels that way, and I appreciated that. Even better, none of the decisions feel like the automatically "wrong" or "evil" choice. Sometimes Shepard was just a dick when you went Renegade, with choices that were practically insane ("Let them die, cause I don't like you" levels of stupid). That's not the case here. A great example is siding with one of two crime groups. Both have done bad things, one has been honest with you but you're told have done worse things, and the others are deceptive but you're told they're more like Robin hood guys. Either way you're siding with criminals, and you don't know if the deceptive guys have been, well, deceiving you or not about who they are, so which do you choose? You've set up a new colony that could really use this big power generator, but there's another colony that was treated badly and separated, but maybe you can repair that relation if you give it to them. Strong decision options here.

#5 - Poor Use of Powers
One of my least favourite things in the game is the power system, though almost entirely because of how good the power system was in ME1-3. Rather than give you the power wheel with quickfire options, they hamstring you with only having quickfire powers, and the rest are locked away. Except not really. They give you access to ALL the powers, a huge number really, but they're in your character points section. You select from that section your three quickfire options. They say this allows you to customize a powerful character by seeing which ones work best, but as soon as I got 3 powers I liked, I never changed them again for the whole game. All my powers dealt good damage, were well mixed for armour and shields, each primed a combo, and each detonated a combo. This made it so I walked through lesser enemies, and could pretty quickly take down big ones too. Once those three were maxed, I rarely even used my gun. It felt like it was there to feign the idea that you're even better than Shepard because you have access to SO MUCH, but since you never actually use those things... it doesn't matter.

Even worse, without the power wheel you don't have access to your squadmate's powers. I loved playing as Shepard and feeling my team click together, with Mordin uses Incinerate, followed up by a biotic blast from Miranda. In Andromeda, though, your squadmates only use their powers as they see fit. Aside from ordering them into certain positions (which I find is only helpful to remind the AI to retreat from a suicidal position), you have no control of their powers. Now, part of me was okay with this, because your character probably hasn't really earned their trust yet such that they're okay with you bossing them around, but that only would've worked if they ever gave you control of their powers somehow afterwards, and they don't. In effect, I felt like I was on my own pretty much the whole game. With the exception of the EXTREMELY rare times where they would kill the last guy almost by accident. Please oh please give me back the power wheel in the next game.

#6 - The Bugs (don't matter)
You've probably been waiting for me to comment on this, but in reality, it wasn't so bad. I never had heads turning upside down or people morphing into insane creatures. Only once did Ryder's face go a little weird, and only for a fraction of a second. In total, I had only 3 real bugs during my play, and only 1 of those was actually meaningful (one of the three fixed itself after I left the planet and then returned, another I could never complete but was a pointless side-quest anyways, and a third was a cut-scene in the game that was skipped altogether, and that sucked). However, it never really took me out of the game, so I wouldn't worry about this too much.

#7 - The Non-Ending
Last thing; Bioware seems to be having a problem with endings. This ending wasn't terrible, but it was definitely a non-ending. Aside from beating the big bad guy and making it so that the Initiative has a firm start now in Andromeda, you didn't really accomplish too much. The bad guys are still out there, still powerful, the galaxy is still incredibly hostile, and you haven't really learned anything. In total, I think you learn 1 important thing, and it's at that mid-point of the game. Everything else is just strung along like "Isn't this cool? Too bad you'll have to wait for the next game!". They did it so hard that I think the series is currently in jeopardy, with no plans for a Mass Effect 5 on the radar. Which is unfortunate, because they HAVE created a really interesting setting, and they HAVE created a rich cast of characters, and Ryder IS a character I want to get to play through more. It's just... just out of reach.

 

Thanks for reading!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Bioware confirmed today they laid off a bunch of staff in Montreal and have put the Mass Effect series on hold for the time being. Take that for what you will, I really enjoyed the writeup! I am waiting till the game drops to 29.99 to pick it up as I burned through the trial and enjoyed it but not gonna pay 79 for it haha.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Thanks for the summary. 

 

I cam confirm pretty much all of it. From my point in the game(just before the end). 

Super bummed out by news of the layoff and on hold.... Enjoying the hell out of this game.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now

Sign in to follow this  

×